OHIO — Together, they combine for 10 Ohio High School Athletic Association football state championships, 13 appearances in a championship game, and 22 regional titles.
Both Bishop Hartley (Columbus) and Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary are among the elites. Four of those 10 state crowns were earned in the past ten years, two by each team.
Both are in Division III, and both will share a football field Friday night in Akron, as part of the OHSAA Game of the Week on Spectrum News 1 for viewers in Northern and Central Ohio.
It’s the first-ever meeting between these two powers, according to SVSM school records. That’s a little surprising since both programs are willing to play anyone, anywhere, routinely taking on Division I and Division II opponents.
In fact, three of the Irish’s (4-4) losses this year are to Division II teams (Barberton, Warren Harding and Hoban). St. Vincent-St. Mary is in good position to reach the postseason, but is in a loaded Region 9 with the likes of Dover, Chardon, Kenston, Aurora, Hubbard, Canfield and Steubenville.
On the recruiting front, watch for SVSM’s Tariq Montgomery, a hulking, six-foot-five, 310-pound offensive tackle committed to play at Marshall next year.
The Hawks (6-2) are comfortably headed toward home field in the first round of Region 11. Hartley lost a 62-58 shootout in the opener to Youngstown Ursuline, and since then have only been beaten by undefeated Cleveland Benedictine.
Spectrum News 1 viewers in southwest Ohio and the Miami valley will see Springfield take on Miamisburg.
Springfield (7-0) won the Region 2 championship in Division I in each of the past two years, only to fall to Elder (2019) and St. Xavier (2020) in the state semifinals. While Marysville, Centerville and Wayne may still have a say this year in that region, Springfield has already defeated the last two on that list, fellow Greater Western Ohio Conference members.
As usual, the Wildcats have plenty of talent. Senior safety Delian Bradley and quarterback Te’Sean Smoot are attracting attention at the next level, while junior wide receiver Anthony Brown has already committed to Minnesota.
They’ll visit Miamisburg, which comes in with a 5-3 record, and in need of help to try and host a first-round playoff game in that same Region 2. The Vikings are known traditionally for strong offensive line play (exhibit A: former Buckeye Josh Myers is now starting at center in his rookie season in Green Bay, and rated as one of the top first-year offensive lineman in the NFL), and have another good one in tackle A.J. Salley, who has committed to play at Cincinnati and is still in his junior season.
Since North and South high schools consolidated into Springfield in 2008, the Wildcats hold a 3-2 advantage over the Vikings. Springfield was a 42-7 winner in the most recent meeting (2019), with the last Miamisburg victory coming in 2015.
Coverage for both games begins at 7 p.m. on Spectrum News 1, and the Spectrum News App. Plus, the playoffs are coming, and Spectrum News 1 is your exclusive home for live playoff games and state championships. The postseason begins on Oct. 29, with live action at 7 p.m., followed by High School Blitz.